-From local bicycle shop to global business

During the conference "Quality assessment in research training" arranged by NorFA and the Danish Research Agency on 3rd November 2003, Per Unckel said in his introduction that Nordic co-operation has developed from "local bicycle shop to global business".
Secretary general of the Nordic Council of Ministers, Per Unckel, recognises many of the same research policy problems from his period as minister of education in Sweden. Some of these problems, he stated, seem eternal. The solution according to Unckel can be found in the EU and the global community:
-EU will run the political future of Europe and the Nordic countries should find forms of co-operation and partners within this framework. We have to concentrate on the real issues of real importance and quit working all national "darlings" into the agenda, Per Unckel said.

Nordic + Baltic countries
The secretary general recommends the sterngthening of what he calls Nordic reasoning, for instance the view of the environment as a integrated part of development. He also wants to preserve the Nordic identity at the same time as we strengthen our voice internationally. We need to compensate for being such small countries through knowledge and innovation and through our friendship with the Baltic countries.

NorFA affected
The Nordic Council of Ministers now wants a new deal of tasks and will make common efforts to reach these goals, Per Uncel said with reference to the White paper on the Nordic region as internationally leading in research and innovation.
-This will affect NorFA, perhaps the most important institution in our system, concluded Per Unckel.

Papers from the conference will be published here when received at NorFA:
Hans Siggaard Jensen: Formålet med forskeruddannelse (ppt presentation in Danish)
Ove Poulsen: Om kvalitet i forskeruddannelserne - er der forskelle mellem producenter og aftagere? (ppt presentation in Danish)
Jón Atli Benediktsson: Comments on ”How to assure quality in research training?” (ppt presentation in English)
Ossi V. Lindqvist: Do the Countries and the Institutions Have Different Perspectives? (Word file in English)
Marja Makarow: Quality in researcher training - differences between disciplines (ppt presentation in English)
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